Memories are a double-edged sword. They say that one must never dwell in the past but the truth is that we spend most of our time creating perfect situations out of imperfect moments from the past in our minds. While some memories bring joy, others cause us deep hurt. Sometimes happy memories bring tears of joy when we look back at them. I spend most of my time in the hustle bustle of a medical college or operation theatre or family life. But when I do get some time for myself I often end up reminiscing about school and college days. Those days will never come back and as Bryan Adams said those were the best days of my life.
I don’t consider myself a good writer. I am very honest about it. When I read other blogs or articles, I am amazed and in awe of them and I often wish I could write like that. But whether I am good or not, I absolutely love writing. It all goes back probably to the very first time I tried my hand at writing in class IX. Up and until then I was never interested in the whole concept of writing. The only writing I knew was the one we did during exams and that was of the worst kind. I loved reading though. Back then I used to read The Secret Seven, The Famous Five, The 3 Investigators, Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, etc. So, the interest in reading was always there but never for writing.
If it wasn’t for one particular summer camp, I don’t think I would’ve ever discovered the art of writing. It was a summer camp I attended in class IX. If I remember right it was over a period of one week where high school students of different schools in and around our area attended. It was organized by the Times of India group and it was probably the best summer camp I ever attended. Every day was an adventure with action packed activities aimed at stimulating both individual and group dynamics and all of us eagerly waited for each day to begin.
— Wanton Scalpel🗡️ (@Surgyen) October 5, 2017
Since it was a camp organized Times of India, one of the activities on the fourth or the fifth day was that of story writing. We were all asked to assemble in the auditorium and were told that we would all have to write a story that day. It could be fiction or real life. But it was compulsory. We, in the boys’ team were not happy about it, as at that time we felt that this activity was sissy. But it was enforced upon us and so we had to do it. And so, I began writing my first ever story. I vaguely remember the gist of what I had written. I was the School Pupil Leader at that time and I had written a fictional story about the whole process of election, campaigning and victory in the end. I made myself look like an underdog who overcame my fear of public speaking to win the elections by delivering a grand speech on election day. Sounds a little silly now but at the time it was akin to becoming the PM of the country. We weren’t told that it was a competition. Just another activity to keep our minds lively.
The story was well and truly forgotten the moment it was submitted to the camp guide. On the last day, all the parents of the participants were invited and there was a small cultural programme organized to show the parents what their wards were up to in the past week. During the prize distribution ceremony, an announcement was made that there was a surprise competition for which prizes would be distributed. It was none other than the story writing one. I still remember the words of the host “The stories written by these class IX kids really surprised us by how good the content was. The top 3 stories could be printed in any magazine. They were that good.” Now when I think back to it, she probably said that just to make us all feel good about ourselves. But at that moment I felt like I was on top of the world because I ended up winning the first place to my utter disbelief. I was also a little embarrassed that I won a prize for something we guys called sissy. But those words by the MC have always remained with me even as I keep writing to this day.
That was my foray into the world of writing and then into blogging. It’s amazing how small acts of encouragement end up making a world of difference in your life. I am sure many of you reading this would have experienced moments like these. Little acts of encouragement go a long way in shaping up young minds.
I am participating in the Write Tribe Problogger October 2017 challenge